Articles by Riley MacLeod

Every Big Game Coming Out In Summer 2017

Illustration by Angelica Alzona We already have more awesome games than we can possibly play, so why not add a bunch more? Here’s all the big games coming out this summer. June 23 Ever Oasis | Action-adventure | 3DS June 26 Secret World Legends | MMO | PC June 27 Valkyria Revolution | RPG | PS4, Vita, Xbox One June 30 Breath of the Wild: The Master Trials | Action-adventure, DLC | Nintendo Switch, Wii U Advertisement Advertisement Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy | Platformer | PS4 July 11 Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age | Fantasy, Remake | PS4 July 12 The End Is Nigh | Platformer | PC July 20 Layton’s Mystery Journey: Katrielle and the Millionaires’ Conspiracy | Puzzle | iOS, Android (3DS coming later) July 21 Splatoon 2 | Multiplayer shooter | Switch July 25 Pyre | Action RPG | PC, Linux, PS4 Advertisement Advertisement Fate/EXTELLA: The Umbral Star | Action RPG | Nintendo Switch July 28 Hey! Pikmin | Puzzle | 3DS 2DS XL August 1 The Long Dark | Survival | PC, Mac, Xbox One, PS4 August 2 Tacoma | Narrative | PC, Mac, Xbox One August 8 Lawbreakers | Multiplayer shooter | PS4,…


Tokyo 42 Is The Cutest Game About Assassination

So shiny! So tiny! Tokyo 42’s cute aesthetic belies a murderous underbelly. It’s a pretty violent game, but look at all the tiny people running away. In the new video game Tokyo 42 your character has been framed for murder, and you must delve into the criminal underbelly to find out why. Your character turns assassin to get in with the people who know the truth, taking contracts to build up their reputation, buy new gear, and uncover new information. It sounds grim, but the game is surprisingly cute. In the couple hours I’ve spent with the isometric shooter, contracts have included infiltrating a target’s stronghold, firing a gun to start off a turf war, sniping men in suits strolling through the park, and leading a group of angry punks into a group of murderous nudists. Tokyo 42 gives you flexibility in how you want to approach these goals, though I tend to opt for stealth because I’m that kind of guy. And then I tend to fail at stealth and start shooting everything. Many miniature firefights have ensued. All of this violence takes place in a world that looks like a tiny playset, and what should be READ FULL…


Here's The PlayStation Plus Lineup For June

If you missed Life is Strange, PlayStation Plus has you covered with June’s lineup. You’ll also get Killing Floor 2 for PS4. As ever, these games are only “free” if you have an active PlayStation Plus subscription. PS4 Killing Floor 2 Life is Strange PS3 Abyss Odyssey WRC 5: World Rally Championship PS Vita (cross-buy on PS4) Neon Chrome Spy Chameleon READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

Impact Winter

I Can't Stop Playing This Busted Survival Game

The church that serves as your home base. Impact Winter is a snowy, post-apocalyptic survival game that came out last week for PC. Some of its design decisions are bizarre, and a lot of the game is downright broken, but I’ve been playing it obsessively anyway. Development studio Mojo Bones released Impact Winter on Steam through publisher Bandai Namco after an unsuccessful 2014 Kickstarter. You play as Jacob, a middle-aged man leading a group of survivors holed up in a church following a meteor hitting Earth, decimating civilization and covering everything in snow. At the beginning of the game you’re informed that rescue is coming in 30 days. All you have to do is keep yourself and as much of your team as you can alive until then. Jacob splits his time between scavenging the world and managing his and his team’s temperature, hunger, thirst, and morale. His companions on his snowy treks is Ako-Light, a floating robot with a limited mini-map who can light the way and use its sonar and drill to find buried supplies. The ruined wasteland is beautiful: there’s a weight to slogging through the snow, stumbling upon the remains of petrol stations, collapsed READ FULL…

What Are You Playing This Weekend?

The weekend is for having a three day weekend, the perfect length of weekend for doing the requisite weekend tasks of social stuff, chores, and doing absolutely nothing. (All weekends should be three days weekends. Just saying.) Also, video games. I’ve been playing Impact Winter, which is a survival game with a lot of snow, i.e., my favorite thing. In addition to your usual solo survival stuff, there’s an aspect of managing a team along the lines of This War of Mine. I’ve been liking it a lot so far, and I’m excited to spend more time with it this weekend. Look for my thoughts next week. What about you? What are you playing? READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


Everyone Can Now Play Gwent

The open beta for Gwent, CD Projekt Red’s standalone version of The Witcher 3‘s card game, starts today for PC, PS4, and Xbox One. In my time with the closed beta I found the game to move a little too fast sometimes, but overall it’s a richer, deeper take on the minigame my Geralt lost all his money on. Learn more or sign up over at the website. You can see the gameplay trailer above, but the cinematic trailer is pretty cool too: READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

games with gold

Assassin's Creed III, Watch Dogs Headline June's Xbox Live Games With Gold

June’s Xbox Live Games with Gold has a solid lineup, including Watch Dogs and Assassin’s Creed III. In addition to the usual four games, subscribers can also get multiplayer DLC for last week’s Phantom Dust. As always, these games are only “free” if you have an active Xbox Live Gold subscription. Xbox One SpeedRunners (June 1-30) Watch Dogs (June 16-July 15) Xbox 360 (compatible with Xbox One) Assassin’s Creed III (June 1-15) Dragon Age: Origins (June 16-30) READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!


Prey: The Kotaku Review

Early on in Prey, I accidentally killed a main character. The game let me keep playing until I lost my nerve and reloaded. Later, I jerry-rigged my way off the space station of Talos I well before I was supposed to. Prey let me get there. It figured I knew what I was doing. Advertisement When it’s at its best, Arkane’s latest game is a spiritual sequel to the 1994 System Shock and successive games like BioShock rather than it is a successor to its 2006 namesake. The Shock games are known for establishing a strong sense of place and empowering players to explore and fight their way through that space in myriad ways. This is the new Prey as well. This new game is a set of interlocking systems that gives players freedom at every opportunity it can. It’s ripe with moments that will be unique to every player and is a game that shines when you take your time and forge your own path. It falters when it tries to tell you a story, but you only have to listen to that tale as a last resort to see the end. It’s READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

before you start

Tips For Playing Prey

Prey is a tense, moody game that makes you distrust everyday objects because they might secretly be monsters. Whether you’re just launching the game or well into your exploration of Talos I, here are some tips for making it through. Don’t worry about playing the previous Prey. I never played the original Prey, and that hasn’t been a hindrance to me at all. That Prey, which was developed by Human Head and came out in 2006, has absolutely nothing to do with this game. This version is more like a new System Shock. Turn up your brightness. I’ve found most PC settings to work out of the box, but I definitely had to turn up my brightness a bit. It helped me spot non-disguised mimics better and navigate some of the less well-lit corridors and vents. Save early, save often. Quick save is your friend in Prey. You’re a lot squishier than the enemies you’ll be facing, especially early on, and death lurks around every corner. You can even quick save during combat, so if you’re chipping away at a particularly tough Typhon, save during the fight to keep from losing your progress. Don’t worry about the READ FULL STORY…

Bath Scenes, Of All Things, Are Adding Depth To Our Game Heroes

You know it, you love it. Bathing is a well-used trope in film and TV. The “shower of angst,” for example, is usually a stand-in for an emotional moment happening to our hero. It might make us empathize more with the person lowering their head under a flow of water. A few video game bathing scenes over the years have let players see new sides of male protagonists, which is helpful given that men don’t tend to emote all that well in games or in popular media in general. Advertisement After surviving the bombing in the beginning of 2016’s Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, Adam Jensen spends some time recuperating in his apartment. Outside of a few scripted sequences, there isn’t much you can do in Jensen’s apartment that can’t be done in any of the other apartments you can break into in the game. In the scene after the bombing, though, the player has the option to make Adam take a shower. The shower shows us a part of Jensen we might not have imagined before: his feet. Unlike other augmented people, whose robotic limbs hang out of torn-off pant cuffs or sleeveless shirts, Jensen is usually fully clothed. Here,…

The Long Dark Pisses Off Players With Unsatisfying Teaser

The Long Dark This week, The Long Dark developer Hinterland learned a tough lesson: If you’re going to put a weeks-long countdown clock on your game’s homepage, it should be counting down to something amazing—not another countdown. Advertisement A little over 20 days ago, wilderness survival sim The Long Dark started a mysterious countdown on its home page. For weeks, fans were abuzz over what would appear when it reached zero. The game’s long-anticipated story mode? The promised sandbox update? When the countdown ended at 1 Eastern time on May 4, the answer turned out to be nothing but another countdown. The fans, as you might imagine, are not thrilled. Fans’ hopes and dreams had been built up even more by the fact that, prior to the countdown’s end, The Long Dark went on sale on Steam, along with the mention that it would be “the last time to buy The Long Dark at early access pricing.” Sunset at Mystery Lake. Instead, when the clock reached zero, game developer Hinterland revealed that August 1, not May 4, would be the big day: The first two episodes of story mode would launch, and the game would leave Early Access after nearly…

early access

Sailaway Lets You Explore The World's Oceans In Real Time, Which Is More Fun Than It Sounds

As I’ve said on this site before, I used to live on a boat, but it wasn’t a sailboat. Playing Sailaway, a sailing simulator that came out on Steam early access last week, I’m learning what it could have been like if we’d had sails: bigger waves, the same absurd amount of ropes, and a lot of new challenges. Advertisement The coolest part of Sailaway is that it pulls real-time data for weather, waves, and wind, and boats move in real time. According to the website, a trip across its virtual Pacific would take months, just like in real life. That’s months of real-time ropes, pulleys, and sail sizes. Look at all this stuff: Nice. That not even all the stuff! The tutorial is somewhat clunky and text-based, so I’ll admit to finding it all a bit much for a sailing noob. There are challenges that function as extended tutorials, as well as a range of difficulty options that influence the detail of the simulation. I’ve tinkered around with one of the lower difficulties and have had fun changing the position and size of the sails to see the READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!

Hitman’s next Elusive Target, The Surgeons, will be available in Hokkaido for 7 days starting Februa


Into the Breach will be the next game by FTL creators Subset Games.